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Officer involved in Freddie Gray's death will oversee Baltimore police integrity unit

Alicia White, one of six Baltimore city police officers charged in connection to the death of Freddie Gray, will oversee Baltimore Police Department's Public Integrity Bureau. Here, White is seen leaving the Maryland Court of Appeals on Thursday, March 3, 2016, in Annapolis, Md.
Jose Luis Magana
/
Associated Press
Alicia White, one of six Baltimore city police officers charged in connection to the death of Freddie Gray, will oversee Baltimore Police Department's Public Integrity Bureau. Here, White is seen leaving the Maryland Court of Appeals on Thursday, March 3, 2016, in Annapolis, Md.

One of the six police officers charged after the 2015 death of Freddie Gray has been tapped to oversee the Baltimore Police Department's Public Integrity Bureau, a unit that handles misconduct investigations.

Captain Alicia White's move from the department's Anti-Crime Section/Gun Violence Unit to the Public Integrity Bureau went into effect on Feb. 11, according to a department news release that announced several other promotions and command changes.

White is one of two commanders who will oversee complaints filed by the public against officers within the Baltimore Police Department, according to The Baltimore Banner, which first reported the news of her command change.

The former lieutenant was promoted to the rank of captain in August 2022, a spokesperson with the Baltimore Police Department told NPR.

"I am proud of each of these promotees and command members," Commissioner Richard Worley said in a statement. "... I am looking forward to our continued efforts in reforming the Department, improving police-community relations and working toward full compliance with the Consent Decree," he added.

White was one of six officers charged in connection with the 2015 death of Freddie Gray, a 25-year-old Black man who was arrested by Baltimore police officers over his legal possession of a knife.

Gray sustained severe injuries while in police custody on April 12, 2015. He died a week later, as the official autopsy report said he suffered a single "high-energy injury" to his neck and spine. Gray's death sparked citywide protests and riots across Baltimore, as residents protested against police brutality.

A year after Gray's death, prosecutors in Baltimore dropped the remaining charges against all six officers after three of them were acquitted at trial by a judge. (Another officer's trial ended with a hung jury.)

White had faced charges of manslaughter, assault, reckless endangerment and misconduct before federal prosecutors dropped them ahead of her trial, The Baltimore Banner reported.

All six officers involved in Gray's death eventually returned to the department once internal investigations were finished, The Baltimore Sun reported.

In 2016, following the dismissal of charges against the officers, White was the first officer to speak out, defending her actions on the day of Gray's arrest to The Baltimore Sun.

"I still believe that, when I went to work that day, I did everything that I was trained to do," White told The Sun. "Unfortunately, that day someone lost their life. But I feel like everything I was trained to do, I did."

White was the only female officer charged with Gray's death, alongside fellow officers Garrett Miller, Edward Nero, Brian Rice, Caesar Goodson, and William Porter.

In 2015, Baltimore officials and attorneys for Gray's family reached a $6.4 million settlement over the 25-year-old's death. Billy Murphy, Jr., the family's attorney, said in a statement following the mediation process that he believed the settlement reached was in the "best interest" of the family and the city of Baltimore.

Copyright 2024 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Jonathan Franklin
Jonathan Franklin is a digital reporter on the News desk covering general assignment and breaking national news.